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client suspects I am using a virtual office

Discussion in 'BlackHat Lounge' started by theseodude, May 21, 2013.

  1. theseodude

    theseodude Regular Member

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    Hello

    so I have this virtual office. the receptionist there says "he is not here right now, if you have anything to give him, I will place it on his desk"
    I have this client who has been coming in and out for the past couple of years. I have never seen her, she just comes in, drops things off, picks things up. There is always an excuse why I am not there, either I am at lunch, or I had to go to the doctor, or whatever.

    so today she came to the office and she called me and she sounded frustrated "I am not sure if this is even your real office, I need to see you" I said "I am only in the office part of the day, can you come tomorrow?"

    anyway, so how can I convince her that this is a real office? It would suck if she finds out.
     
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  2. Duffers5000

    Duffers5000 Elite Member

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    If you only charge small fees then whats the problem ? its a central station for you to collect your work.....If she wants to meet for a coffee you should be accessible.

    If she wants a marble office with the smoked glass then your fees go up 100%.

    You should proudly say you keep your overheads low to pass savings on to customers.
     
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  3. KeyzDT

    KeyzDT Power Member

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    an office is a sign of establishment so I can understand if she is worried a little.
     
  4. Bluefrog_1974

    Bluefrog_1974 Junior Member

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    Tell her that because she is in a rush that you can call in to see her after a meeting whenever...don;t mention the office again until she does.
     
  5. saxgod

    saxgod Regular Member

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    Most of these buildings where you can get a virtual office will also rent out meeting rooms etc on a hour to hour basis.
    So just schedule a meeting with her in one of those meetingrooms.
     
  6. Sunday Lunch

    Sunday Lunch Junior Member

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    Exactly this. You can tell her that the organisations that have the most ostentatious buildings, with marble floors etc, are banks, the reason they do this is to give the impression that the customers money is safe with them. Tell her that you want to keep your costs as low as possible in order to pass savings onto her and your other clients but you are battling against the perception of security that has been established by the biggest fraudsters around.

    Tell her it was not your intention to mislead however the virtual office staff have been telling people that you are out, in meetings etc as is their standard practice and as opposed to trying to keep track of their white lies you just tell people that it is your office.

    Are you doing a good job for her? If youre working from a public bathroom what difference does it make to her?
     
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  7. theseodude

    theseodude Regular Member

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    unfortunately, that's not how most people think. they think if you don't have an office, you are some homeless guy, and won't trust you. Yes I am doing a good job for her, but she is unsatisfied with my lack of availability.
    as a side note, I have had clients ask me "where are you based"? and I said "I dont have a physical office, it's just me and my laptop" and never heard back from them.
     
  8. Leith

    Leith Jr. Executive VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    Agreed. I've been rejected many times when I didn't have an office.

    Having a physical address does indeed help.
     
  9. Sunday Lunch

    Sunday Lunch Junior Member

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    I suppose that you are correct in the sense that the client may feel that you could disappear from the face of the earth a lot easier but then I presume you are only billing for work that you have already undertaken anyway?
     
  10. Bluefrog_1974

    Bluefrog_1974 Junior Member

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    So many people get scammed in business, the office or physical location gives them a security (a false one but that's another story).
     
  11. mikestern

    mikestern Registered Member

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    i need to use virtual office service but for short term, no longer then 1 month
    any 1 know good service? not expensive
    all i need is to receive 1 time mail from Google and that's it..
     
  12. Bluearrow

    Bluearrow Regular Member

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    Since you know her for 2 years I guess she is happy with your work. Maybe she will be fine with finding out you use an virtual office. But problems if what if she get pissed about it (She would I guess). Anyway I think you will need to meet her in person. See if your virtual office provider offer meeting rooms etc too. Probbly it's the best way.
     
  13. Techxan

    Techxan Elite Member

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    Just tell her the truth. You use a virtual office service as many people who work from a home office do. It keeps you overhead down and separates the business from your personal life..

    Give her your real address, and offer to take her out to lunch to discuss how this affects your work with her.

    Right now she is suspicious, because she thinks you are hiding something. You are.

    Something can be sinister. When she finds out you are hiding the fact that you are frugal, the problem more than likely goes away.She has ferreted out your secret, and it was nothing to worry about.

    If you do nothing, she will distrust you more and more, and may leave. If you tell her the truth,she may get mad and leave. If you tell her the truth, she may also stay.

    You have much better change of keeping her if you tell her the truth. You can allays say that you got the virtual office when you were caring for your elderly (name relative here). It was more continent and less expensive to care for them than maintaining and going to an office every day,and you kept the arrangement when they got better.

    In my case this is true, I care for my wife, and I work from my home. I do not apologize for that.

    I am sure it has cost me work, but work will come to you if you do what you do well at a competitive price. It takes time, but quality and hard work will always be rewarded.
     
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2013
  14. zenlagor

    zenlagor Regular Member

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    I think she just wants to meet face to face, unless you live the other side of the world I do not see why this is an unreasonable request.
     
  15. ice_jay2000

    ice_jay2000 Registered Member

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    Use Regus, they do monthly and have locations world wide.
     
  16. The Scarlet Pimp

    The Scarlet Pimp Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    not having a presentable appearance will always cost you. two years ago i lost a deal because the client wasn't secure with the location.

    this situation will surface again so it's best to be ready for it.
     
  17. Pa1nstxr

    Pa1nstxr Newbie

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    I wouldn't make up excuses towards her. Be available when she needs you, that's the only thing.
     
  18. steelballs

    steelballs BANNED BANNED

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    If she greets you like this! What will you do?

    [​IMG]
     
  19. netmoney1

    netmoney1 Executive VIP

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    Saying "I dont have a physical office, it's just me and my laptop" as you did is the same as shooting yourself in the foot.

    Make sure your virtual office has meeting rooms available, and meet her - simple as that. I think you are looking too deep into this. Meet the client, keep them happy.

    Also, are you in the US? If so, get accredited with the BBB. They get all warm and fuzzy seeing that on your site and looking at your rating. The BBB is complete bullshit and a racket but clients love it.

    Be honest with your clients - if you dodge questions/meetings they will obviously think you are hiding something.



    EDIT: Just realized this is a month old thread that was bumped. Either way, good luck.
     
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2013